After forming its ruling alliance in Thane Municipal Corporation on Tuesday with the help of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), the Shiv Sena is all set to take over the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) for the fourth consecutive time.
After the understanding between the MNS and Shiv Sena about supporting each other in Thane and Nashik, the parties have kept a safe distance from each other in Mumbai.
As the Shiv Sena has enough number of corporators in the BMC, the MNS has decided to remain neutral during the elections and will abstain from voting.
This will neither affect the Shiv Sena-BJP-RPI alliance’s chances of winning nor will it work for the Opposition.
On Friday, mayor Shraddha Jadhav will hand over the reins to newly appointed mayor after the elections. The Shiv Sena’s candidate Sunil Prabhu will face Congress candidate Sunil More for the mayoral elections. The election will be held at civic headquarters at CST at 11am.
The nomination for the post of deputy mayor’s post is with BJP’s Mohan Mithbaokar.
The NCP has nominated Haroon Khan to contest against Mithbaokar. Even as the Sena-BJP-RPI had 102 corporators, they needed 12 more to reach the magic number.
As Arun Gawli-led Akhil Bharatiya Sena (ABS) announced its support to the saffron alliance, the Sena still had to manage 10 Independents. While it was learnt that each supporting vote was ‘managed’ for a price, party sources claimed that more than 10 Independents have announced unconditional support to the Sena-BJP-RPI to form the ruling front. “We have managed more numbers of Independents than required. Uddhavji has used his foresight and convinced the Independents to support,” said a senior leader.
Sunil Prabhu, who started his career as a personal assistant to former MLA from Goregaon, Gajanan Kirtikar, scaled the heights in his political career quickly. After taking over as a shakha pramukh of Goregaon east, Prabhu contested the election in 1997. After that, he won all civic election. But when the Sena preferred him over Kirtikar, he contested the 2009 assembly elections, which he lost to Congress candidate Rajhans Singh because of the rift between him and Kirtikar.
Undeterred, Prabhu won with the highest margin.
Sources said Prabhu had lobbied hard for the mayor’s chair, keeping in mind the assembly elections, which is 22 months away. This gives Prabhu a chance to come in contact with his voters and can make most of the two-and-a-half year mayorship term.